An Order to Develop Methods of Financing Sustainable Passenger Rail Services
February 10, 2005
32 FY 04/05
WHEREAS, the 115th Maine State Legislature enacted the Passenger Rail Service Act directing the Maine Department of Transportation to establish regularly scheduled rail service within and beyond the State of Maine; and
WHEREAS, the Northern New England Passenger Rail Authority was formed in 1995 to assist the implementation of the Passenger Rail Service Act; and
WHEREAS, the Sensible Transportation Policy Act of 1991 requires the state to incorporate transportation alternatives to highway construction and meet the diverse transportation needs of rural and urban populations, the elderly and the disabled; and
WHEREAS, the federal Clean Air Act Amendments require state action to mitigate any increased air emissions from highway projects; and
WHEREAS, by 2013, congestion on I-95 between Exit 44 and Exit 48 and I-295 between South Portland and Falmouth will reach unacceptable levels; and
WHEREAS, the passenger rail system benefits freight services, supports economic development in service center communities and improves access to Boston and other major markets; and
WHEREAS, passenger rail service addresses Maine’s changing demographics, shifting population and coastal development patterns; and
WHEREAS, since 2001, the Downeaster has transported over 730,000 passengers, and has the highest customer satisfaction and on-time performance in the Amtrak system;
NOW, THEREFORE, I, John E. Baldacci, Governor of the State of Maine, do hereby establish the Task Force on Passenger Rail Funding.
The Task Force on Passenger Rail Funding will identify financial resources and develop a plan to establish sustainable funding for passenger rail service.
The Task Force shall be comprised of a Chairman and seventeen (17) members. Membership composition shall be the following:
The President of the Senate and the Speaker of the House may each appoint two members from his or her respective body, these members shall serve at the pleasure of the President or the Speaker, as applicable.
The Governor shall appoint the Chairman and the remaining thirteen (13) members to the Task Force, these members shall serve at the pleasure of the Governor:
• The Chairman of the Northern New England Passenger Rail Authority
• One (1) representative of the Maine Turnpike Authority
• One (1) representative of a statewide transportation organization
• One (1) representative of Trainriders Northeast • One (1) representative of the Maine Chamber of Commerce
• The Commissioner of the Maine Department of Economic & Community Development or his designee • The Commissioner of the Maine Department of Transportation or his designee • Three (3) persons representing regional economic interests • Four (4) persons at-large
- Staff & Meetings
The Maine Department of Transportation, with participation from the Northern New England Passenger Rail Authority, shall provide all necessary staff from existing resources. The Task Force will meet monthly beginning in February 2005 and conclude by February 2006. Members will serve without compensation.
Final Report The Task Force will present their findings and recommendations to the Second Session of the 122nd Legislature’s Joint Standing Committee on Transportation.
The effective date of this Executive Order is February 10, 2005